You Never Know

– “There is one word in America that says it all, and that one word is, ‘You never know.’” Joaquin Andujar

This is Tyler Schmidt. He’s one of the Oilers training camp invites headed for Edmonton in the fall. He’s a 6.01, 211 pound "stay-at-home" defender and an extreme long shot to make the NHL.

Schmidt didn’t have one outstanding skill in his draft year and remains a guy who looks like a "tweener."  However, you never know and good for the Edmonton Oilers procurement department for extending the invite.

You never know

The problem is you never know. The girl with the thick glasses and the sniffles who sat next to you in grade 4 turns into the most beautiful girl in the world overnight and you’re left wondering how on earth you missed it.

The Edmonton Oilers have had plenty of good fortune with undrafted kids over the years. Charlie Huddy is probably the most famous undrafted player to have an impact for the organization but he’s certainly not the only one. Randy Gregg, Ty Conklin, Marc-Andre Bergeron, on it goes.

Schmidt is off to university this fall and goalie Adam Brown will return to junior after Oilers TC according to this report.

Searching for gold

The Edmonton Oilers are right to be inviting goalies and defensemen to training camp. They look blessed at all three forward slots but the blueline and the goaltending are miles from good enough. History can help a little, and in fact Oilers history offers some clues. Consider this news item from Feb. 1980:

Article is here. I think the Oilers need to send these scouts out to Canadian colleges, Minsk, Montana, and faraway places in search of another Randy Gregg and another Charlie Huddy. The club has shown a willingness in recent months to sign low level free agents and maybe Taylor Fedun becomes something worthwhile.

I do think the Oilers current 50-man list has some players who could be flushed in favor of some mid-20s defenders with some international experience. Finding a gem from a group of defensemen worldwide in the 23-28 year old range would make this rebuild catch fire.

Defensemen like Randy Gregg aren’t terribly exciting, but man they can make a poor defensive team easier to watch in  a heartbeat. Surely someone is out there in the wilderness.

  • Stack Pad Save

    Lowetdie, can you have legitimate tryouts this day and age in the NHL with contracts with huge dollars attached, one way contracts, and huge media hype surrounding the draft and prospects to even allow a “Randy Gregg” type to even make a team like the Oilers?

  • Justin R

    Good on ya LT.

    Looking at players with the tool bag and lacking practice is never a bad thing. Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell really puts the finer points on why “late bloomers” abound if eyes are open, particularly for hockey.

    I think having a look at Schmidt, Fedun and House could be good, as long as skating is a part of that tool bag. If at 25 or so they haven’t gained the basic skills for hockey – skating, puck control, shooting and passing, it’s likely too late for pro hockey at the highest level. For the Oilers right now, if they don’t have enough practiced skills, mean probably has more value. Move on.

    Even if we have better options coming up, if these players can be developed into NHL’ers they gain a lot of value to throw into a deal when the time comes. All acquired for little.

  • Pilgor09

    I’m a sucker for a chick with nice legs. Not the skinny ones, the ones that have a little cushion. The first picture made me melt.

    The second chicks face is unreal and she has a great body.

    Can someone summarize this article for me. I only go to lowetide’s blogs for the pictures. I honestly don’t know how to read.

    • Wanyes bastard child

      I still think LT spends half his time writing blogs and the other half dodging his wife and looking up pics of hawt girls on the internet eh 😛

  • Sir Smoka Lottt

    Randy Gregg is the nicest person to play in the NHL.He used to run hockey camps in Tuktoyaktuk N.W.T and bring free hockey gear for minor hockey.They don’t make’em like that anymore that’s for sure.

  • Sir Smoka Lottt


    You’re right LT…ther’s gold in them thar hills.

    Gillis is mining it feverishly.

    D Chris Tanev: signed as an udrafted free agent.

    D Sebastien Erixon: Udrafted free agent signed from Timra where he put up 20 points in 44 games.

    And, of course, a fan favourite around here…Alex Burrows. (Before Gillis’ time though)

  • Justin R

    I believe the ladies are Sofia Vergera and Raquel Welch. And I agree, the Oilers need to get some help on the blue line. The forwards look better than the defense and Dubnyk should get more load than N.K.

    • EasyOil

      Errrrrr…. I don’t know if you’re joking, Islanders of the North, but I really think you need to read the article again if you’re not. LT wasn’t saying he was some sort of saviour, he’s just a TC invite not a new signee, which ALL teams do EVERY year. You never know where good hockey players are hiding, for example Charlie Huddy and Randy Gregg. It’s called good management and the Oilers are just doing their jobs leaving no rock unturned.

  • Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate

    Just throwing this out there, but Randy Gregg is a MEDICAL DOCTOR. SO why is he not the Oilers TEAM DOCTOR???

    Or would that be another example of “the old boys club”?

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Good luck to Tyler Schmidt.

    Everyone’s pulling for that underdog guy who has everything to gain as he goes up against a guy who has everything to lose. By all means help yourself to Jeff Petrys spot Tyler.

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    What is the point in bringing a guy that is going to college this year to camp? Especially one who you can’t own his rights.

  • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

    Dr.Gregg is an awesome guy, really nice and he knows his sports injuries, best doctor to go to in Edmonton if you’ve hurt yourself in any kind of physical activty IMO, I’ve gone to him for multiple sports injuries and he’s a great guy and a great doctor.

    as for the article LT good read but sure these guys can work out sometimes and turn out to be good players but I think if we draft and developp properly then we’ll have better and more talented players filling the roles than these kind of players your referring to in your article, I’d rather develop someone we drafted like Musil to fill a huddy/gregg roll on the team then to hope we find a player like that that plays in the CIS

  • Spydyr

    The Ole Randy Gregg wrist shot…… wouldn’t even have enough on it to bounce off the end boards but he still picked up a few points on screens and bad rebounds. There were a few good forwards in front of the net picking up the leftovers.